Vietnamese Preserved Salted Fish Stew Recipe

Serves/Makes: 4 - 6


  • 10 ounces snake-head mullet
  • 10 ounces salted fish (mam sac)
  • 1/2 cup shrimp, peeled and washed
  • 1/4 cup sliced fresh pork belly or pancetta
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped shallots
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped lemongrass
  • 1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 small red chiles, seeded and sliced
  • 1 1/2 cubed eggplant (1 medium)
  • 2 teaspoons sugar

  • Garnish:
  • 2 cups fragrant leaves
  • 2 cups shaved water spinach stems
  • 2 limes, cut into wedges
  • 2 cups bean sprouts
  • 2 cups sliced cucumber
  • 1 head lettuce
  • 1 cup banana blossom
  • 2 cups peeled and sliced lotus stems
How to cook Vietnamese Preserved Salted Fish Stew:
  • Heat oil in a large pan, add garlic, shallots, pork belly and lemongrass. Saute until soft.
  • Add shrimp, toss quickly until heated through, season with pepper.
  • In a large saucepan, add water and both types of fish; bring to a boil.
  • Simmer for 15 minutes or until the fish completely breaks apart. Remove fish and set aside. Remove bones and discard.
  • Strain the stock, then boil again with 2 pieces of chili, all of the shrimp-pork mixture, eggplant and sugar.
  • Simmer for 10 minutes or until reduced by one-third.
  • Set a portion of the fish in individual bowls. Add stock.
  • Serve with fragrant leaves, sliced water spinach stems, lime wedges, bean sprouts, cucumber, lettuce, banana blossom and lotus root.


The Vietnamese Preserved Salted Fish Stew recipe very easy to prepare and so good!
The Vietnamese name for this recipe is Mam Kho.


There are many different grades of Mam Kho, however, any dried or salted fish will work with this recipe - cod is a good choice. Soak the salted fish in water for 10-15 minutes and brush clean to remove any dirt or impurities. For the fresh fish, use a whole fish, or just the head, which is considered a delicacy. Any firm-fleshed fish can replace the snake-headed mullet.

This recipe for Vietnamese Preserved Salted Fish Stew serves/makes: 4 - 6

The Vietnamese Preserved Salted Fish Stew (Mam Kho) recipe is adopted from The Authentic Vietnamese Cooking by Corinne Trang.

Main Ingredient: Mullet (more Mullet recipes)
Preparation Method: Poached/Simmered (more Poached/Simmered recipes)
Cuisine: Vietnamese (more Vietnamese recipes)

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